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Customs seize 180 bales of second-hand clothing, 3,465 bags of rice, others in Osun

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The Nigeria Customs Service, Oyo/Osun Area Command, has made a total seizure of 180 bails of second-hand clothing from a train operated by the Nigerian Railways Corporation with total Duty Paid Value of N13,252,311.

Other seizures made between March and April include 310 drums of 100litres each of 180 kegs of 25 litres each of Premium Motor Spirit otherwise called petrol at different points.

Other seizures include 3,465 bags of 50kg parboiled rice with Duty Paid Value of N82,636185; 13 kegs of 25litres each of vegetable oil with DPV of N282,426; 44 gallons of 4litre each of vegetable oil with DPV of N278,805; 20 unit of used tyres with DPV of N162,938. Total DPV for the seizures stands at N96,612,665.

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The Area Controller, Oyo/Osun Command, Helen Uche-Ngozi, who made this disclosure during a press conference at the Command headquarters in Ibadan, on Tuesday, puts the total duty collected between January and April at N20,051,805,179 only.

Uche-Ngozi said, ”

During our anti-smuggling activities of March and April 2020, the Command made a seizure of 310 drums of 100litres each and 180kegs of 25litres each of Premium Motor Spirit otherwise called petrol at different points and axis of the Command.

“They will be auctioned and the proceeds will be remitted accordingly. We were also able to identify a petrol filling station carrying out illegal activities within its premises. The petrol station has been sealed and arrested suspects were made to write statement and undertaking to desist from such illicit activities.

“We made an unusual seizure of 180bales of second hand clothing from the train operated by the Nigerian Railway Corporation with Duty Paid Value of N13,252,311. We got it in a coach.”

She listed the means of conveying the banned products to include two Dangote trucks; two J5 buses; one Fiat Ducato; one Toyota Highlander Sport Utility Vehicle; one Mazda 323; four Volkswagen Golf cars; one Ford Transit bus; one Mercedes Benz truck; and two Mazda 626 car.

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Others are one Daf truck; one Mazda 326; one Mazda bus; three Nissan Pathfinder; three Nissan Pickup; one Mitsubishi Spacewagon; one Toyota Camry; one Toyota 4Runner; and four Volvo cars, with total value of N97,165,164.

She said, “For this phase of seizures, the total Duty Paid Value is equivalent to N193,777,829. In summary, the cumulative Duty Paid Value from January to April is N312,189,456. Within the period under review, we have made 72 seizures and 63 detentions.

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“We carried out our enforcement and anti-snuggling activities with the utmost professionalism, caution and intelligence gathering. We urge the public to cooperate with the Nigeria Customs Service in the implementation of the government fiscal policies to help the economy and social welfare of the nation.”

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Fire crews battle San Diego navy ship fire, 18 sailors injured

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At least 18 sailors were taken to a San Diego area hospital after suffering minor injuries in a large, ongoing blaze aboard the military ship, USS Bonhomme Richard, on Sunday, Navy officials said.

San Diego firefighters arrived at the three-alarm fire on Sunday to find thick black smoke billowing hundreds of feet into the air from several points along the 844-foot (257 m) amphibious assault ship docked at the San Diego Naval base, according to live video footage of the scene.

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Emergency crews in boats were alongside the burning ship, spraying it with hoses.

“Eighteen Sailors have been transferred to a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries,’’ Naval Surface Forces wrote on Twitter on Sunday afternoon.

It added “the entire crew is off the ship and all are accounted’’.

Some 160 sailors were aboard when the fire was reported around 8.30 a.m. local time, Naval Surface Forces said.

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Earlier on Sunday, the San Diego Fire-Rescue department wrote on Twitter that there had been an explosion at the ship and they were working with Federal Fire to clear the area.

All San Diego Fire-Rescue responders were accounted for as of 11.19 a.m. (6.19 PM GMT), the department said on Twitter.

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Around noon local time, the department said all its personnel had been instructed to exit the pier, while aerial video footage showed the blaze appeared to grow.

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Army rescues kidnapped victims, recovers weapons in three states

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The Acting Director, Defence Media Operations, Defence Headquarters, Abuja, Brig.-Gen. Benard Onyeuko disclosed this at a press briefing on Sunday in Faskari, Kastina State.

The Newsmen reports that the Chief of Army Staff, Lt-Gen. Tukur Buratai had on July 6 flagged off the Operation Sahel Sanity at Special Army Super Camp in Faskari as part of the Nigerian Army Day Celebration.

Onyeuko said the Chief of Army Staff flagged off the exercise to flush out armed bandits, cattle rustlers, kidnappers and other criminal elements from the North West Zone.

“The troops quickly mobilised to the area and engaged the criminals, neutralising scores in the process.

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“The situation was quickly brought under control and the troops subsequently dominated the area with patrols denying criminal elements freedom of action,” he said.

He said on July 9 while responding to a distress call, troops deployed at Gidan Baure in Jibiya Local Government Area of Katsina  State rescued three young girls kidnapped by armed bandits at Sayau village.

Onyeuko said on the same day, troops also rescued three kidnapped victims in Isa Local Government Area of Sokoto State.

“Two other kidnap victims who were kidnapped on June 1, 2020, at Yayi village in Sabon Birni LGA of Sokoto State have been rescued by the troops.

“All the victims have been handed over to Katsina and Sokoto State Government officials for further action.

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“Receiving a credible intelligence, the troops sprang an ambush at Gidan Jaja in Zurmi LGA of Zamfara, the bandits fled with heavy gunshot wounds, abandoning one AK 47 rifle in the process.

“While on aggressive mobile patrol, our troops intercepted three armed bandits who opened fire on troops.

“During the firefight, one of the bandits was neutralised while others fled in disarray, one AK 47 rifle and one motorcycle were recovered,” he said.

Onyeuko also said on Saturday, July 11,  troops laid ambush between Daki Takwas and Tashar Kuturu villages of  Anka and Talata Mafara Local Government Areas of Zamfara.

He said troops made contact with the bandits who escaped with various degrees of gunshot wounds in the cover of darkness.

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Onyeuko said troops had continued to dominate the area as a means of confidence-building for the residents and farmers to continue their agricultural activities.

He added that items recovered included one motorcycle, 10 Dane guns, one catapult and one knife.

Others, he said,  were one saw, 16 plugs, one axe and three cell phones.

Onyeuko, on behalf of the Chief of Army Staff, commended the troops for their gallantry, successes and the professionalism exhibited within the short period of the operation and urged them not to rest on their oars.

He reassured the people of the North-West Zone of the army’s commitment to restoring peace in the region.

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South Africa issues night-time curfew as coronavirus cases rise

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South African President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced a new round of coronavirus restrictions on Sunday in response to the country’s rising rate of infections.

“From Monday onwards, a night-time curfew will be enforced between 9 pm and 4 am, while face masks will be compulsory in public places and a ban on the sale of alcohol will be reintroduced.

“The national “state of disaster” is also to be extended until Aug. 12.

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“We are now recording well over 12,000 cases every day,” Ramaphosa said in a televised Sunday evening address to the nation.

He noted that too many South Africans were now relaxing their behaviour after restrictions were eased.

South Africa has confirmed 276,242 coronavirus cases to date, the president said.

The government imposed a nationwide lockdown at the end of March to stem the spread of the virus and give the country time to build up its health infrastructure.

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However, the measures were then gradually eased again in May and June, although the sale of tobacco products has remained banned ever since.

The restrictions have had a devastating effect on the country’s economy, with millions struggling to survive, and levels of poverty and food insecurity dramatically worsening in just a few weeks.

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Even before the pandemic, Africa’s second-largest economy was already in a difficult situation.

With high unemployment rates and brutal social inequality, the country has been struggling for years with structural economic problems and unreliable electricity supply.

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